Chili is good any time of the year, and a bean-less, all-meat chili with a mysterious background flavor is sure to please.

Southwest Style Mole´ Chili (prep. time: 40 minutes stove top, up to 8 hours in a slow cooker. Serves 12) *Gluten-free, dairy-free

½ yellow onion, diced

½ green bell pepper, diced

2 dried red peppers sliced into thin rings

¼ tsp cayenne pepper powder

2 Tb. chili powder

1 can crushed tomato

salt/ pepper

1 clove garlic, diced

1 ½ lb. stew beef, cut into smaller, bite-sized pieces

¼ C. grated dark chocolate ( Mexican chocolate would be great, but the darkest solid chocolate you can find will substitute)

Stir all ingredients together in a large stock pot and simmer on the stove for 40 minutes to an hour until the peppers, onion and beef are tender.  Longer and lower heat makes a better chili.  In a crock pot, cook on high 4 hours, low 6-8).

Serve with warm tortillas, shredded cheese, avocado, corn chips, etc.

(Mole´ is popular in Mexican cooking and utilizes a very dark chocolate.  If Mexican chocolate is not available, substitute with the darkest chocolate you can find, 80% cocoa or higher.  You want the chocolate essence and not so much a recognizable flavor of chocolate.)